Former President Mary McAleese is to become a Professor of Children, Law and Religion at the University of Glasgow.

The post is a joint appointment between the College of Arts and College of Social Sciences at the university. She will take up her position during the 2018/2019 academic year.

Prof McAleese, who was the President of Ireland for two terms from 1997 to 2011, said that joining the University of Glasgow "opens up exciting prospects for collaboration in teaching and research on the subjects of children, law and religion".

"The university has a culture of innovation and cross-disciplinary engagement which augurs well for fresh and fascinating scholarly initiatives in these fields. I am looking forward to being part of these developments," she added.

Prof McAleese is trained as a barrister and journalist, and was formerly Reid Professor of Criminal Law, Criminology and Penology at Trinity College Dublin and Pro-Vice Chancellor at Queen's University of Belfast. She also formerly worked at RTÉ.

She completed a doctorate in Canon Law at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, and her thesis will be converted into two books on children's rights and an article on the Holy See and the Committee on the Rights of the Child.

The former president also holds honorary doctorates from more than 20 universities.

The theme of her presidency was "Building Bridges". She was president during the historic state visit to the Republic of Ireland by Queen Elizabeth II in May 2011.

Since 2013, she has taught courses in various higher educational institutions on children rights, gender and LGBT rights in international law, as well as the Holy See and International Children's Rights, The Great War and Ireland, Conflict Resolution and the Irish Peace Process.

Prof Sir Anton Muscatelli, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Glasgow, welcomed the new appointment.

"I am absolutely delighted that Professor Mary McAleese is joining the University of Glasgow. As well as being well-known on the international stage, she is an accomplished academic with vast experience in her field. I have no doubt her insights and wisdom will be of great benefit to our students and staff," he said.

Prof Roibeard Ó Maolalaigh, Vice Principal and Head of the College of Arts at the university, said: "As an inspiring and distinguished senior leader with an outstanding track record, we are delighted that Professor McAleese will be joining us.

"She will bring great energy, expertise, and experience to her new role within the arts and humanities and will enhance our reputation as a world class interdisciplinary university. We look forward to welcoming her to Glasgow."

While Prof Anne Anderson, Vice Principal and Head of the College of Social Sciences, said that she is "thrilled" to welcome the former president and academic.

"This appointment will help strengthen our already talented team in Social Sciences. I am also positive that our students will take away many new lessons for her inspiring lectures and extensive scholarship in both the fields of research and academia."